Can Dogs Eat Ground Beef? Is It Good for Them?
8 Minute Read
Published on Dec 09, 2022
Can Dogs Eat Ground Beef? Is It Good for Them?
Ground beef isn’t just a delicious dish for you — it’s also a protein-packed, nutritious food that can be added to your four-legged best friend’s diet. No matter how you incorporate ground beef into Fido’s food habits, this is a healthy food your pup is sure to love.
As something that’s probably already in your fridge or freezer, ground beef is a simple addition to your dog's diet that is sure to be delicious and full of healthy benefits. Today, we’ll talk about the best types ground beef to give your dogs and why adding ground beef is just so beneficial to their diets.
What Are the Benefits of Giving Ground Beef to Your Dog?
From its protein-packed nutrients to its serving of yummy minerals, let’s look at what ground beef can do for your dog’s health and wellness.
There’s a whopping 19 grams of protein in 100 grams of 85% lean and 15% fat ground beef. Protein is an important part of a dog's diet and can help the formation and maintenance of your dog’s:
- Immune System
- Digestive System
This is one treat that can help your pup look and feel their best!
Containing essential amino acids such as tryptophan, histidine, lysine, isoleucine, and more, ground beef provides some of the essential amino acids that dogs need and are unable to produce on their own — just like it can for humans!
Fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6 are essential in any dog’s healthy diet, promoting skin, joint, and hair health while also fighting inflammation.
Ground beef contains five minerals that are necessary for a dog's well-rounded diet:
How Much Ground Beef Should I Add To My Dog’s Diet?
Add about 1/3 of a pound of ground beef to your furry BFF’s daily diet for every 20 pounds of your dog’s body weight.
Let’s say your dog is 40 pounds. If you wanted to feed them only ground beef, you would feed them 2/3 of a pound. If they’re 60 pounds, you’d feed them a full pound of ground beef.
Although dogs primarily get their nutrients from meat, our favorite pets need a well-rounded diet to stay happy and healthy. Just like we can’t persist on meat alone (as much as we’d like to), we wouldn’t recommend feeding your dogs only ground beef. Use these meat measurements as a jumping off point, and adjust as needed when you add their other food into the mix.
If your pup is 60 pounds and you normally feed them three cups of dry kibble, it’s easy to add a little fresh ground beef to their diet. Try splitting both amounts in half and mixing them together, or add 1/3 cup of ground beef to two cups of kibble. Simply adding meat to their normal amount of food without reducing the kibble you serve them could cause weight gain, so be careful to give them the same amount of calories as you usually would — just with delicious ground beef in place of some of the kibble.
Maybe you want to go all in and cut pet food out all together. It’s okay to feed your dog healthy amount of ground beef as part of the process, but adding other foods with that beef is going to help your pup feel their best.
Some other important additions to your dog's meal could include:
How Do I Prepare Ground Beef for My Dog?
We recommend breaking the ground beef up into small pieces and cooking either by boiling it until brown or in a pan (with no oil or butter). Make sure you keep the ground beef seasoning-free for your dog, as most spices aren’t good for your pet, such as garlic and onion.
If your dog is a little bit on the chunkier side, the leaner the meat the better. You can also drain the fat after cooking or rinse the meat beforehand.
Because they are carnivores, dogs can eat raw meat as well as cooked meat. Both raw ground beef and cooked ground beef provide nutrients your dog needs — although, if it’s sourced from somewhere you don’t know, feeding your dog raw ground meat could potentially make them sick. That’s why knowing where you get your meat is so important!
What Beef Is Best?
We know you love your dog; they’re part of the family! So, why feed your best friend sub-par ground beef? Locally sourced, grass-fed, regenerative, and trusted ground beef is not only affordable and the best option for your dog, but it’s the best option for environmental sustainability as well.
Why Does What I Feed My Dog Matter?
Nothing matters more than the health of those we love, our beloved pets included. So, let’s talk about why providing the best of the best is important for our pets and ourselves.
Buying locally sourced meat has many benefits. Just a few include that it helps cut down on the emissions released into our environment, it supports our communities and local economies, and it can be friendlier to your budgets. Plus, it’s better for your health — and your pet’s.
Grass-fed beef is leaner and higher in nutrients than its counterpart. There are more antioxidants, vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids, which are necessary for a pooch’s healthy diet. It is also less likely to contain harmful bacteria and parasites like E.coli!
Regenerative Meat and Farming
Regenerative meat are meat products that come from farmers who practice regenerative agriculture. Regenerative agriculture and farming hope to reverse climate change by restoring soil biodiversity.
Regenerative agriculture occurs when farms successfully:
- Rotate their crops, meaning they farm more than one plant on the same plot of land
- Plant year-round, which helps prevent soil erosion
- Plow their fields less to conserve tillage
- Let their cattle graze naturally, which stimulates plant growth
- Don’t use fertilizers or pesticides
- No or limited GMOs
- Are conscious of animal welfare
- Are fair to their farmers
That sounds pretty great to us.
We all want to know what’s going into the food we eat and feed to our loved ones, but finding a trustworthy source of meat can be a difficult task. Trusting that you are getting the best possible food is so important, so seeking out a local farm or a trustworthy company that connects you to local farms is ideal.
How Will Adding Ground Beef Affect My Budget?
Dog food can be cheap — but sometimes, the cheaper the food, the fewer nutrients you’ll find inside. If you want nutrient-packed dog food, it can cost you anywhere from 300 dollars a month … which really adds up.
Let’s say you have a 60-pound dog and want to feed them a cup of ground beef moving forward each day. You feed them twice a day, splitting that cup of beef in half, once in the morning and once at night. That means that you go through a pound of beef every two days.
One pound of ground beef at $9.99 means you are spending about $5 a day on food for your dog compared to the over $9 a day when you feed healthy dog food to your pet.
Is Ground Beef a Dog Owner’s Option?
We know dogs can be picky eaters, just like us! Although the most budget-friendly and nutrition-packed option, ground beef is not the only healthy meat you can add to your dog’s diet. Pork and poultry are also fantastic options for your dogs.
Unlike ground beef, pork must be fully cooked before you serve it to your dog. Unseasoned, well-cooked pork is a great option, but make sure to keep the bacon and sausage just for you, as it could upset their stomach and cause pancreatitis in some cases.
Poultry like chicken, turkey, and quail are other great proteins you could add to your dog’s diet. Much like pork, feeding your dog raw chicken is a no-go, but boiled chicken breast with no seasoning is a great addition to their balanced diet, or even just as a little dog treat.
So … Can Dogs Eat Ground Beef? What Pet Parents Need To Know
Yes, dogs can eat ground beef! Adding ground beef to your best friend’s diet provides a source of protein, amino acids, essential fatty acids, and minerals to their day-to-day lives — some of which they can’t produce themselves.
Ground beef is a nutritious and delicious addition to your dog's meals. Finding local, trusted, and grass-fed farms that practice regenerative agriculture is of the utmost importance when searching for the best ground beef for you and your dog.
Pet Food Ingredient and Label Guide | PetMD
Regenerative Agriculture 101 | NRDC
Homemade Dog Food Recipes: Choosing Balanced Ingredients | AKC